Grafted In

Grafted In

When I was a teenager, I had a close friend who was adopted. He had been told about his adoption when he was just a child, but didn’t fully process what it meant until he was much older. His adoptive parents showered him with love and affection, provided security and...

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Created to Bear Fruit

Created to Bear Fruit

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.”—John 15:1-2 Pruning is a horticultural practice involving...

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Abide in Jesus

Abide in Jesus

“Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.”—John 15:3-4, ESV In the movie Knight and...

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Connected to Christ

Connected to Christ

I enjoy fruit. I enjoy pineapple, strawberries, blueberries, apples, and oranges—the list goes on and on. I just enjoy fruit. But I don’t always like to think about fruit from my life, because I rarely consider it correctly.For instance, when I finish...

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The Vine and Branches

The Vine and Branches

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”—John 15:5 There is a forest across the street from our home. It is dense with trees, bushes and vines. I have never seen...

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Fruitful Women

Fruitful Women

As I look at the grape arbor in my backyard, heavy with grape clusters, shaded by large leaves, and old gnarled branches intertwined with young tender green branches, it reminds me of the many fruitful women I have known in my life, who ministered in both...

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Optimize Your Giving

Optimize Your Giving

“So give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.” —Matthew 22:21 Ultimately all things belong to God. As Psalm 24:1 says, “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.” So, the things that are...

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YC19: Reflection

YC19: Reflection

Two years ago, I wrote about YC17—why it’s important to young people, and how it changes lives. I wrote it as a sixteen year old. Now, I’m nearly nineteen, and looking back, I greatly underestimated the power of a convention like this. I’m convinced that...

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Counting It All Joy

Counting It All Joy

The woman is curled up, hugging her knees to her chest, lying on her side on the floor. There is a guard, so she can’t escape. She has been denied food and water for two days. She has been threatened with death. Her children have been taken away and beaten. And she is...

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Glimpse Project: Chad 3.0

Glimpse Project: Chad 3.0

Immediately after Jesus’ conversation with the Samaritan woman at the well, as recorded in John 4, his disciples return to him after their food procurement mission into town. They are perplexed as to why Jesus is talking with a foreign woman, and at his apparent lack...

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The One Who Kept Walking

The One Who Kept Walking

Jesus called his followers to abide in him, or remain in him. There was a man living thousands of years earlier who did just that—by walking.“Altogether, Enoch lived a total of 365 years. Enoch walked faithfully with God; then he was no more, because God...

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One Body: Created for a Purpose

One Body: Created for a Purpose

What happens when the hand says to the body, I don’t need you, or when the head says to the foot, I don’t need you?On December 26, 1919, the Boston Red Sox sold Babe Ruth to the New York Yankees for $100,000. The sum was the most paid for any ball player...

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One God: “What’s the Meaning of Life?”

One God: “What’s the Meaning of Life?”

I didn’t accept God’s gift of eternal life until I was 35 years old. The Holy Spirit brought me to faith in Jesus as I read the truth about him from the pages of his Word.From time to time I’d return to the Christian bookstore where I’d gotten my first...

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One Church: Love One Another

One Church: Love One Another

While I served a church in western New York for several years, I had many conversations at the church playground with neighbors. As I worked in the yard on a Saturday, neighbors arrived with their kids to play. When they came, I would brush dirt from my...

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One Mission: To Know, and to Make Known

One Mission: To Know, and to Make Known

I grew up camping. On one occasion when I was camping with my family, my dad sent me out on an important mission: to get water. I took a giant kettle and wandered toward the water spigot. I fumbled with the archaic pump, but I managed to fill the kettle...

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